Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Time Traveler's Necklace (DIY)

One of my favorite pastimes is visiting little antique shops (especially on rainy days). 

I could wander for hours examining the trinkets and dusty books.  In eclectic places like that, you can almost feel the rich history and stories surrounding you.  With the smells of old fabric, furniture polish, and mothballs, it’s easy to get lost in time.  So often I discover fascinating little things and try to imagine what interesting conversations I might have had with their ancient owners.
This handmade necklace is a collection of materials from several different windows in time.  Vintage lace, industrial chain, and modern mass produced plastic beads come together to create a pretty necklace that almost has the look of an estate sale treasure.  Here’s how to make your own:

You will need:

String of plastic beads
Needle and thread
Hot glue gun

Start by trimming the chain, lace, and ribbon to the same length.  My sections are about ten inches long.
Using the needle and thread, sew the ends of the sections together.  This will keep them secure and prevent your necklace from unraveling in the future.
Braid the three sections and then sew the other ends together.

For the plastic beads, I used a very cheap strand from Goodwill.  The little gray beads are fused to the string.  You could also use Mardi Gras beads or inexpensive strands of beaded garland (I come across these at thrift stores all the time).  I cut my strand of beads to twenty eight inches long.

On another section of ribbon, add two dabs of hot glue to attach the end of your bead strand and the braided segments.

Roll the ribbon around until you have the ends completely concealed.  Trim the ribbon and fold in the raw edge to avoid fraying.
Glue or sew the folded end to the wrapped ribbon.  Repeat with the other side and you are finished! 
What makes this necklace beautiful and interesting is the variety of textures.  Try experimenting with other materials for the braided section, such as: shoelaces, strips of fabric, leather cord, rope, bike chain, or anything else you can find. 

This tutorial was featured on Lomography!

1 comment:

  1. this is amazing! Im going to have to try with this with some of my thrift store finds!